As a small child, I hurt myself. I can’t remember what the injury was, but it involved lots of band-aids (or plasters as we say in England), and when she had to take off the dressing, it always hurt. One day, I cried out as she went to pull off the dressings, but I remember feeling shame for my cowardice.
“I’m sorry for being like this,” I said. “I know I should be brave.”
My mum wasn’t normally one of those mums filled with pithy wisdom, but on this days she told me something I’ve always remembered.
“Courage isn’t not being scared,” she said. “Courage is being scared and then doing it anyway.”
I think the same is true about strength.
Strength isn’t not feeling pain. Strength is feeling pain and doing it anyway.